In the absence of first-choice spinners Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja, Amit Mishra was given the responsibility of the spin department in the recently-concluded ODI series against New Zealand and after looking at his performance, one can say that the veteran leg-spinner has justified the team management’s faith in him.
With 18 wickets in five matches, including a five-wicket haul in the decider at Visakhapatnam, the leggie emerged as the highest wicket-taker in the series. Apart from spearheading the spin department, the 33-year-old also had the responsibility of leading the young spinners. After the conclusion of the second ODI, Mishra said he was enjoying in helping the youngsters and has now expressed his satisfaction for leading the way with an example.
Talking to bcci.tv, he said: “As a senior bowler, I had the opportunity to talk to the youngsters in the side and share my knowledge. You can only make them understand when you raise your game. If you lift your performance, they will get inspired and follow what you say,”
With Ashwin and Jadeja doing well, Mishra rarely gets a chance to prove himself but when the bowler was asked about his plans in the series, he said: “In this series, I was always looking to take wickets. Yes, I did bowl according to the situation, but my objective was to go for wickets. If you look to contain, you are going to get hit.”
After thoroughly dominating the Test series, the hosts were given a run for their money in the ODI series, and the leggie said that the series win was a crucial one as there were a lot of youngsters in the squad.
“This is a very crucial series win for us. We had a young group and it is important that their morale stays high. The series was levelled and this was the final and the kind of performance that the boys (have) shown; bowling them out in just 24 overs is very important.
“Now, when they play for India again, they will know what needs to be done and how they can get better. This win has sent a positive message to the youngsters,” he concluded.